ATLANTA (Ticker) -- Maryland never gave Tennessee or its partisan crowd at the Georgia Dome a chance to get in the game.
Quarterback Scott McBrien rushed for a pair of touchdowns as the 18th-ranked Terrapins routed the Volunteers, 30-3, in the Peach Bowl to complete a remarkable turnaround.
Maryland (11-3) won 10 of its final 11 games after a 1-2 start and recorded its first bowl victory since beating Syracuse, 35-18, in the 1985 Cherry Bowl. The only loss for the Terrapins during that stretch was a 48-13 setback to Virginia that snapped an eight-game winning streak.
Last season, coach Ralph Friedgen led Maryland to its first Atlantic Coast Conference title in 17 years, but the Terrapins were drubbed by Florida State, 56-23, in the Orange Bowl.
A year later, Maryland reached 11 wins for only the second time in the 110-year history of the program. The Terrapins' only other 11-win campaign came in 1976, when they went 11-0 in the regular season before losing to Houston in the Cotton Bowl and ending the season ranked eighth in the country.
"It's about a team that we got on the win side of a bowl game," Friedgen said. "Heck, it's been sine 1985, when I was here as an assistant coach in the Cherry Bowl.
"That was so emotional. I am so proud of these kids. We had such adversity tonight. We started a walk-on (at nose guard) and lost an interior lineman. The defense just played unbelievable and the offense played well, too. I'm just so proud of these kids."
The defeat ended a disappointing campaign for Tennessee (8-5), which suffered its first five-loss season during Phillip Fulmer's 12-year tenure as coach.
"As I told the team, I take full responsibility for the game and the lack of execution," Fulmer said. "We didn't play as well as I thought we would. Our discipline wasn't what it needed to be. There are a number of things that happened that are my responsibility."
Maryland appeared better prepared for the contest, holding the the Volunteers to a season-low 45 rushing yards. Tennessee's previous low was 59 yards against Alabama.
"We were able to run the football the last two or three games. But they just shut us down tonight," Volunteers tight end Jason Witten said. "It was tough. It seemed like they were always in the right place at the right time."
The Terrapins repeatedly pressured Casey Clausen, who was sacked six times. He completed 23-of-37 passes for 242 yards.
"It's been a long time since we've been physically whipped," Clausen said. "Maryland played a good game and we didn't. When you go up against good teams like Maryland, you can't make mistakes."
Linebacker E.J. Henderson, the Butkus and Bednarik Award winner, spearheaded Maryland's defensive effort with 12 tackles - including four for losses - and two sacks.
"All the hard work really paid off," Henderson said. "We have really come together as a team. I think we showed we can play with a team like this and win it all."
The Volunteers were held without a touchdown in a bowl game for the first time since the 1957 Gator Bowl, when they lost to Texas A&M, 3-0. Tennessee reached the Maryland 16 with nine minutes left but turned the ball over on downs.
McBrien scored the only touchdown the Terrapins needed on a one-yard keeper with six minutes left in the first quarter and went in from six yards just over two minutes into the final period to make it 27-3.
McBrien was 11-of-19 for 120 yards and rushed seven times for 36 yards.
"We just executed very well tonight," he said. "We kept the defense on its toes and made plays when the opportunities were there. We got the job done."
Steve Suter's Peach Bowl-record 79-yard punt return set up Nick Novak's third field goal of the game, a 25-yarder with four minutes to go. Novak also converted from 44 and 48 yards.
Cornerback Curome Cox returned an interception 55 yards to give Maryland a 14-0 lead 3:28 into the second quarter.
"I think we won convincingly," Friedgen said. "That was the No. 8 defense in the country, these weren't a bunch of players who didn't play before. They have played some pretty good people before. They played Miami, Alabama and Georgia, and nobody beat them as convincingly as we did."